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Cocaine Airways

A former CIA pilot says secret flights to El Toro could explain a Marine officer’s ‘suicide’

William Robert "Tosh" Plumlee

By NICK SCHOU

Thursday, September 14, 2006 - 3:00 pm

When we first spoke, a decade ago, the fear in his voice—the staccato pace, the tremor—was unmistakable.

“I can’t talk to you,” he said. “This is all classified.”

He answered just one question: if he told me what he knew, he’d go straight to federal prison for violating U.S. national security laws.

Then he hung up the telephone.

Two weeks ago, I tracked the man to his home in rural Pennsylvania. This time, he didn’t hang up on me. The terror in his voice was gone, replaced by the cheerful nonchalance that maybe just comes with being 69 years old and knowing that your kids have finished college, you’re well into retirement, and it’s too late for anyone to ruin your life for talking to a reporter about matters that powerful people would rather keep secret.

He laughed when he recalled our conversation a decade ago. He apologized for not answering my questions. He asked me what I wanted to know.

Over the course of the next several days, the man told me his life story.

http://www.ocweekly.com/news/news/cocaine-airways/25835/

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To quote a piece from the article:

"One of Plumlee’s partners in running guns to Castro and his cohorts was a man we’ll call “Carlos,” an M26-7 member whose sister, along with several others, had been gunned down by Batista’s agents in a raid on a Havana safe house. Convinced a Batista agent masquerading as a revolutionary had aided the attack, Carlos spent two years establishing the mole’s identity and then lured him onto a gunrunning flight from Florida’s Marathon Key to Cuba. Plumlee copiloted the plane. “Somewhere between Cat Cay, southeast of the Keys, and the Cuban coast, the door light went red in the cockpit, meaning the cargo door had been unlatched,” Plumlee says. He went back to the cargo area to investigate. The suspected Batista agent had disappeared, and Carlos was re-latching the cargo door. “My copilot told me to get back in my seat,” he says. “He told me it was a Cuban affair.”

I'm wondering if the 'Carlos' mentioned here is De Torres?

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Cocaine Airways

A former CIA pilot says secret flights to El Toro could explain a Marine officer’s ‘suicide’

William Robert "Tosh" Plumlee

By NICK SCHOU

Thursday, September 14, 2006 - 3:00 pm

When we first spoke, a decade ago, the fear in his voice—the staccato pace, the tremor—was unmistakable.

“I can’t talk to you,” he said. “This is all classified.”

He answered just one question: if he told me what he knew, he’d go straight to federal prison for violating U.S. national security laws.

Then he hung up the telephone.

Two weeks ago, I tracked the man to his home in rural Pennsylvania. This time, he didn’t hang up on me. The terror in his voice was gone, replaced by the cheerful nonchalance that maybe just comes with being 69 years old and knowing that your kids have finished college, you’re well into retirement, and it’s too late for anyone to ruin your life for talking to a reporter about matters that powerful people would rather keep secret.

He laughed when he recalled our conversation a decade ago. He apologized for not answering my questions. He asked me what I wanted to know.

Over the course of the next several days, the man told me his life story.

http://www.ocweekly.com/news/news/cocaine-airways/25835/

Tosh,

While I admire your courage and openess and need to set things straight, I question what appears to be your willingness to dangle out those who need to remain in the shadows. After all, you of all should be aware that all is not safe!

Al

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Tosh,

While I admire your courage and openess and need to set things straight, I question what appears to be your willingness to dangle out those who need to remain in the shadows. After all, you of all should be aware that all is not safe!

Al

As someone who has long worked with Tosh on many aspects of his life, I can assure you that some questions for him naming names or giving details go unanswered by him.....which seems to indicate some level of 'care' about what should and shouldn't be out in the open.....although we can all have our opinions [or guesses] on where the 'line' should be drawn. I'd only add that we are about in the USA to be consumed and destroyed by 60+ years of a 'national security state' run amok in its secrecy and much of what was done within that secrecy and if not exposed - we all [on the planet] will soon perish IMO...and to the extent that Tosh or anyone with some information steps forward, I applaud it in full and ask all to detail the 'dirty deeds' that need the disinfection of the sunlight upon them to the maximum......we need more, not less disclosure! I applaud Tosh Plumlee for what he has tried to air. Again, having worked at times closely with him, I know he carefully considers what to say and what not to say....only he can know if the 'calls' were the right ones....and this applies for each of us....

I totally agree with you Peter, but I also understand that exposing the players does not necessarily expose the orchestrators and will more often times than most, corrupt those who have been victimized by the orchestrators and never reach the source. This is what I am getting at and what my concerns are here. For those who went up the hill and came back down with a heavier load than they carried up. Tosh will understand!

Al

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Tosh,

While I admire your courage and openess and need to set things straight, I question what appears to be your willingness to dangle out those who need to remain in the shadows. After all, you of all should be aware that all is not safe!

Al

As someone who has long worked with Tosh on many aspects of his life, I can assure you that some questions for him naming names or giving details go unanswered by him.....which seems to indicate some level of 'care' about what should and shouldn't be out in the open.....although we can all have our opinions [or guesses] on where the 'line' should be drawn. I'd only add that we are about in the USA to be consumed and destroyed by 60+ years of a 'national security state' run amok in its secrecy and much of what was done within that secrecy and if not exposed - we all [on the planet] will soon perish IMO...and to the extent that Tosh or anyone with some information steps forward, I applaud it in full and ask all to detail the 'dirty deeds' that need the disinfection of the sunlight upon them to the maximum......we need more, not less disclosure! I applaud Tosh Plumlee for what he has tried to air. Again, having worked at times closely with him, I know he carefully considers what to say and what not to say....only he can know if the 'calls' were the right ones....and this applies for each of us....

I totally agree with you Peter, but I also understand that exposing the players does not necessarily expose the orchestrators and will more often times than most, corrupt those who have been victimized by the orchestrators and never reach the source. This is what I am getting at and what my concerns are here. For those who went up the hill and came back down with a heavier load than they carried up. Tosh will understand!

Al

This is another example of the TRUTH coming out by someone who is in the later stages of his or her life.

We have been given a lot of facts in the past few years in this manner. Relish them.

Peter

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Cocaine Airways

A former CIA pilot says secret flights to El Toro could explain a Marine officer’s ‘suicide’

William Robert "Tosh" Plumlee

By NICK SCHOU

Thursday, September 14, 2006 - 3:00 pm

When we first spoke, a decade ago, the fear in his voice—the staccato pace, the tremor—was unmistakable.

“I can’t talk to you,” he said. “This is all classified.”

He answered just one question: if he told me what he knew, he’d go straight to federal prison for violating U.S. national security laws.

Then he hung up the telephone.

Two weeks ago, I tracked the man to his home in rural Pennsylvania. This time, he didn’t hang up on me. The terror in his voice was gone, replaced by the cheerful nonchalance that maybe just comes with being 69 years old and knowing that your kids have finished college, you’re well into retirement, and it’s too late for anyone to ruin your life for talking to a reporter about matters that powerful people would rather keep secret.

He laughed when he recalled our conversation a decade ago. He apologized for not answering my questions. He asked me what I wanted to know.

Over the course of the next several days, the man told me his life story.

http://www.ocweekly.com/news/news/cocaine-airways/25835/

Tosh,

While I admire your courage and openess and need to set things straight, I question what appears to be your willingness to dangle out those who need to remain in the shadows. After all, you of all should be aware that all is not safe!

Al

XXXX

Al: Glad to hear your doing well. I understand your concern. I assure you that my intentions are not to put others "on point", as they (like so many we know) have paid their dues in full. In view of world events and other matters creeping and leaking forth from the Washington DC circle at present; and perhaps new efforts I see in a cover-up concerning old ops from the late eighties and early nineties (concerning matters we both know about) I feel it is my duty to bring these matters forward before the fact and not after the fact. In doing this I fell I am also protecting those "operatives", military and civilian who were associated with those events and are our friends and associates. To remain in secret and play the shadows, while politicians and others of special interest twist the facts and create illusions, only opens to door for harm to some to step in and muddy the picture, and too, to seal the truth within that dark world.

We Americans are heading for very difficult times and our past activities must be covered by those who still play the secret game. It is a world others from the eight to five crowd cannot even began to comprehend. To remain secret any longer only plays into the hands of those who have political motives. As you know our friends are not in DC. This is an election year. And for some they had better see that their past deeds do not see the light of day. That and this war is not over yet. To crouch and hide knowing the truth of matters no longer play in my book. In my opinion, It's time to clean house even if we have to throw the baby out with the dirty bath water. I for one do not have the option of 'playing safe' any longer. The door is about to close on the truth that you and I both know to be... Hang in there my friend. Its been a long road. Tosh

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Cocaine Airways

XXXX

Al: Glad to hear your doing well. I understand your concern. I assure you that my intentions are not to put others "on point", as they (like so many we know) have paid their dues in full. In view of world events and other matters creeping and leaking forth from the Washington DC circle at present; and perhaps new efforts I see in a cover-up concerning old ops from the late eighties and early nineties (concerning matters we both know about) I feel it is my duty to bring these matters forward before the fact and not after the fact. In doing this I fell I am also protecting those "operatives", military and civilian who were associated with those events and are our friends and associates. To remain in secret and play the shadows, while politicians and others of special interest twist the facts and create illusions, only opens to door for harm to some to step in and muddy the picture, and too, to seal the truth within that dark world.

We Americans are heading for very difficult times and our past activities must be covered by those who still play the secret game. It is a world others from the eight to five crowd cannot even began to comprehend. To remain secret any longer only plays into the hands of those who have political motives. As you know our friends are not in DC. This is an election year. And for some they had better see that their past deeds do not see the light of day. That and this war is not over yet. To crouch and hide knowing the truth of matters no longer play in my book. In my opinion, It's time to clean house even if we have to throw the baby out with the dirty bath water. I for one do not have the option of 'playing safe' any longer. The door is about to close on the truth that you and I both know to be... Hang in there my friend. Its been a long road. Tosh

Tosh:

I thank you for your courage and patriotism. You are so correct about the road this nation is

on. If only there were more like you: willing to talk, in spite of obvious danger. If there were the bastard

fascists who stole our country, God only knows exactly when, would no longer have their ill -gotten power.

J is smiling. As am I.

Dawn

Thanx to B. for the article. Go Canada!

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Al: Glad to hear your doing well. I understand your concern. I assure you that my intentions are not to put others "on point", as they (like so many we know) have paid their dues in full. In view of world events and other matters creeping and leaking forth from the Washington DC circle at present; and perhaps new efforts I see in a cover-up concerning old ops from the late eighties and early nineties (concerning matters we both know about) I feel it is my duty to bring these matters forward before the fact and not after the fact. In doing this I fell I am also protecting those "operatives", military and civilian who were associated with those events and are our friends and associates. To remain in secret and play the shadows, while politicians and others of special interest twist the facts and create illusions, only opens to door for harm to some to step in and muddy the picture, and too, to seal the truth within that dark world.

We Americans are heading for very difficult times and our past activities must be covered by those who still play the secret game. It is a world others from the eight to five crowd cannot even began to comprehend. To remain secret any longer only plays into the hands of those who have political motives. As you know our friends are not in DC. This is an election year. And for some they had better see that their past deeds do not see the light of day. That and this war is not over yet. To crouch and hide knowing the truth of matters no longer play in my book. In my opinion, It's time to clean house even if we have to throw the baby out with the dirty bath water. I for one do not have the option of 'playing safe' any longer. The door is about to close on the truth that you and I both know to be... Hang in there my friend. Its been a long road. Tosh

Al, who I don't know...and Tosh, who I know well obviously know each other. Again, I can only reiterate, that to my frustration, but understanding, I have asked direct questions to Tosh where he would not 'go' to answer....either to protect others who he felt did not deserve being 'outed' without it being their own decision to do so; or to protect what he felt to be legitiment operations; or becuase to 'go' there was a bit too dangerous; and I'm sure there were other reasons, alliances and allegences I can't know or imagine. That having been said, if every intelligence / black operative would only tell about one illegal/immoral/unconstitution mission they had participated in we wouldn't be in this f****ing mess we are now....and Tosh by my count has told about more then two hands full....and maybe add my toes too. [ie more than his share]. He knows I know some of the personal grief he has gone through for this..[and let me assure you it is major] and I'm sure there are other pressures he has not been able to mention to me also. Despite this he has persisted....and should be congratulated, encouraged and supported IMO. You don't even have to believe all he has ever said, much of it has been corroborated by others and all of it needs more action and investigation - and accountability at higher levels - such as from where/with whom the operations and the 'ethics' [or lack thereof] behind them originated. Not one of the operations he or others have detailed were their own 'projects'....far from it....

To Tosh,

Forgive my friend if I overreacted. It was not meant as a slam to you or a show or of being disloyal as to what you are trying to do. It was simply a safeguard and a reminder that there are those out there who have a tremendous amount to lose if certain things and names go public. As always, I applaud your courage and feel for what you have went through in your life. I also am ashamed that we all cannot have this courage and take these chances that you have and are doing.

To Peter,

Please understand that there are those out there that have risked a great deal and have held cards that allowed them to walk away from such wet ops. Most mechanics are no longer around to talk. There will be a day when their children are grown and careers have lived out their life, when they will be willing and eager to shove the truth down the throats of those who have masterminded these attrocities. Regardless the cost!

Al

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I see Gene Wheaton is a source on the murder of Colonel Sabow. I also believe he gave evidence on the death of three mangers who discovered details of CIA illegal activities. Do you know anything about this? It has to be remembered that it was Wheaton who first broke the Iran-Contra scandal. Do you think Wheaton is a reliable witness?

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I see Gene Wheaton is a source on the murder of Colonel Sabow. I also believe he gave evidence on the death of three mangers who discovered details of CIA illegal activities. Do you know anything about this? It has to be remembered that it was Wheaton who first broke the Iran-Contra scandal. Do you think Wheaton is a reliable witness?

John: I take exception to statements that Gene Wheaton was the first to expose the Iran-Contra affair. Gene is a very good investigator and has many contacts in the Intel community and he means well. However in reference to Iran-Contra he was not the first one who broke the story. That person was Scott Wheeler who was murdered at Poco Solo Costa Rica on an undercover operation for military Intel and the DEA. Scott had talked to his case officer about the activities he had encountered shortly after the Contra southern front had been formed. This information eventuality exposed the John Hull Ranch and activities of Carr and Gilberie (?phoe spel) I had taken the maps (meaning more than one) to Senator Gary Hart at Scotts request. (1983-86) Senator Hart gave copies of the maps and background information to the Senate Arm Service Committee and The Senate Foreign Relations Committee on two different occasions through the years 1983-86. Both of these committees elected to do nothing with the "Field" reports or the information at that time because it would compromise on going operations. Sometime later, Senator John Kerry was given a briefing and the copies of the maps were turned over to his investigators, John Winer and Dick Mc Call.

Gene Wheaton became aware of this about a year or two later (after the Le Penca bombing) It was then that he started going public and became associated with Dan Sheenan and the Christic Institute. Gene found me in Grant Colorado and we meet and talked about Contra and other matters. Nothing was said about JFK or Cuban operations of the fifties or sixties. Gene did not bring it up, nor did I. He had a wealth of information on CIA activities and operations of the past, but not current "ongoing ops". Later, he told me he was, as he said, investigating the Gander airline crash for some of the families. I liked Gene and I trusted Gene. Some years later he ask me about Col. Sabow and El Toro. He also was investigating the C-130 Forest Service matter and was responsible for my being part of the CBS 60 Min. program about that and the Connie Jung CBS Eye to Eye program concerning Col Sabow. During all these associations and contact nothing was ever said about JFK or anyone associated with Cuban affairs. Most all of this about Gene Wheaton's information came to my attention after the 1990 and into 2000. Some of Gene's information is right on, and too, some of it is faulty.

I believe Gene was a conduit and, at times, was given false information by the powers that be. His JFK information was based on "Hear Say" some of it from me after the Sabow trial in California in the nineties and from others as we casually talked and speculated about old operations of the past with Gene Wheaton. Even at that time nothing was said by Gene that he knew anything about the players in JFK's assassination. Jenkins and others were set into the JFK matter sometime in the mid to late 1990's by Wheaton and others. It was presented as 'First Hand Knowledge' to various Senate investigators before and after Kerry.

I did see a CIA document that was later shown to a California reporter by an undercover operative which Gene had shown me and ask if I thought it was real. The document had not been declassified and I ask him how and where he had obtained the document. It was real and had the coded sequence numbers and file locator codes still intack and SECRET was not crossed out nor were there blacked out names and information within the document. Two air carriers, which I was familiar with were named in the document. Gene also had copies of aircraft ID numbers and fuel receipts of which I had signed for at El Torro in my military operative name at the base. This concerned me at the time as to how he had obtained the documentation. He never told me. Only said it best I did not know.

Jay Harrison who had the most complete data base (more complete that Mary Ferrel) was at odds with most of Gene Wheaton's conclusions and his later detailed work in reference to JFK and Contra. As I have said Wheaton's early work was good work, but after he became involved with the Christic Institute and the Le Penca bombing his credibility went down in my book. I too, made the same mistakes in judgment as to who and what to confide in as to my activities. Its easy to do, as Gene and I both know, to get roped into someone's "special projects for profit". So in sumation. I feel most of Genes work on the JFK was launched long after most of the information (he presented) had already been put into the main stream of research. I believe Gene accepted that information as fact and past it along. The contra information was mostly feed to him by the Christic Institude which I refused to become a part of. The Sabo case in California was derailed and not all because of Gene, however he was a part of it, IMO. (willing or by accident I do not know)

http://www.phoenixarchives.com/express/199...sh%20Plumlee%22

http://www.meixatech.com/COLSABOWHOMICIDE.pdf

http://www.meixatech.com/SabowReports.html

http://www.militarycorruption.com/sabow-2.htm

Edited by William Plumlee
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Al: Glad to hear your doing well. I understand your concern. I assure you that my intentions are not to put others "on point", as they (like so many we know) have paid their dues in full. In view of world events and other matters creeping and leaking forth from the Washington DC circle at present; and perhaps new efforts I see in a cover-up concerning old ops from the late eighties and early nineties (concerning matters we both know about) I feel it is my duty to bring these matters forward before the fact and not after the fact. In doing this I fell I am also protecting those "operatives", military and civilian who were associated with those events and are our friends and associates. To remain in secret and play the shadows, while politicians and others of special interest twist the facts and create illusions, only opens to door for harm to some to step in and muddy the picture, and too, to seal the truth within that dark world.

We Americans are heading for very difficult times and our past activities must be covered by those who still play the secret game. It is a world others from the eight to five crowd cannot even began to comprehend. To remain secret any longer only plays into the hands of those who have political motives. As you know our friends are not in DC. This is an election year. And for some they had better see that their past deeds do not see the light of day. That and this war is not over yet. To crouch and hide knowing the truth of matters no longer play in my book. In my opinion, It's time to clean house even if we have to throw the baby out with the dirty bath water. I for one do not have the option of 'playing safe' any longer. The door is about to close on the truth that you and I both know to be... Hang in there my friend. Its been a long road. Tosh

Al, who I don't know...and Tosh, who I know well obviously know each other. Again, I can only reiterate, that to my frustration, but understanding, I have asked direct questions to Tosh where he would not 'go' to answer....either to protect others who he felt did not deserve being 'outed' without it being their own decision to do so; or to protect what he felt to be legitiment operations; or becuase to 'go' there was a bit too dangerous; and I'm sure there were other reasons, alliances and allegences I can't know or imagine. That having been said, if every intelligence / black operative would only tell about one illegal/immoral/unconstitution mission they had participated in we wouldn't be in this f****ing mess we are now....and Tosh by my count has told about more then two hands full....and maybe add my toes too. [ie more than his share]. He knows I know some of the personal grief he has gone through for this..[and let me assure you it is major] and I'm sure there are other pressures he has not been able to mention to me also. Despite this he has persisted....and should be congratulated, encouraged and supported IMO. You don't even have to believe all he has ever said, much of it has been corroborated by others and all of it needs more action and investigation - and accountability at higher levels - such as from where/with whom the operations and the 'ethics' [or lack thereof] behind them originated. Not one of the operations he or others have detailed were their own 'projects'....far from it....

To Tosh,

Forgive my friend if I overreacted. It was not meant as a slam to you or a show or of being disloyal as to what you are trying to do. It was simply a safeguard and a reminder that there are those out there who have a tremendous amount to lose if certain things and names go public. As always, I applaud your courage and feel for what you have went through in your life. I also am ashamed that we all cannot have this courage and take these chances that you have and are doing.

To Peter,

Please understand that there are those out there that have risked a great deal and have held cards that allowed them to walk away from such wet ops. Most mechanics are no longer around to talk. There will be a day when their children are grown and careers have lived out their life, when they will be willing and eager to shove the truth down the throats of those who have masterminded these attrocities. Regardless the cost!

Al

Al; No problem. You and I are very "thick skined" I understand your concern. Your right. Perhaps when some of the ones we know get a little longer in the tooth, and the distance is far and their love ones safe, perhaps then they will come forth and tell their deeds of dareing. Until then, I assure you I in noway would ever bring then to the surface or cause harm to them or give them up. You take care and thanks for all your good work and the research you have done. I assure you, It is not wasted.

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I believe Gene was a conduit and, at times, was given false information by the powers that be. His JFK information was based on "Hear Say" some of it from me after the Sabow trial in California in the nineties and from others as we casually talked and speculated about old operations of the past with Gene Wheaton. Even at that time nothing was said by Gene that he knew anything about the players in JFK's assassination. Jenkins and others were set into the JFK matter sometime in the mid to late 1990's by Wheaton and others. It was presented as 'First Hand Knowledge' to various Senate investigators before and after Kerry.

Gene Wheaton's information came from Carl E. Jenkins and Chi Chi Quintero. They have both confirmed that they told Wheaton this story. However, they claim they were lying.

What do you know about the information that Jenkins gave to Sheehan? Is it possible that he was being paid by the CIA to mess up Sheehan's case? Is that why Wheaton is so angry with Jenkins?

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I believe Gene was a conduit and, at times, was given false information by the powers that be. His JFK information was based on "Hear Say" some of it from me after the Sabow trial in California in the nineties and from others as we casually talked and speculated about old operations of the past with Gene Wheaton. Even at that time nothing was said by Gene that he knew anything about the players in JFK's assassination. Jenkins and others were set into the JFK matter sometime in the mid to late 1990's by Wheaton and others. It was presented as 'First Hand Knowledge' to various Senate investigators before and after Kerry.

Gene Wheaton's information came from Carl E. Jenkins and Chi Chi Quintero. They have both confirmed that they told Wheaton this story. However, they claim they were lying.

What do you know about the information that Jenkins gave to Sheehan? Is it possible that he was being paid by the CIA to mess up Sheehan's case? Is that why Wheaton is so angry with Jenkins?

John: Anything I would know along those lines would only be speculation on my part. I do know that neither of these gentleman, Jenkins or Quintero, would know anything about the intermost workings of those operations, JFK as well as Contra, even if they were CIA operatives at the time. They would only know a small part of the total picture. As for the CIA, as an agency, useing them direct to derail an independent investigation would not happen unless a cut out was used as a "go between". To use them direct could and most likely would compromise that operation and other operations of the time.

If the CIA as an Agency set it up and paid money to discredit, then I would have to ask; Who in the CIA would be to source for that information to leak out? And Who would make the pay-out?. Sometimes operatives fabricate and speculate openly to see where the info goes and how it is interputed and how it gets into the media or to other foreign agents. From there the info is fine tuned and perhaps twisted to protect various aspects, or personal of the (or their) operations.

I think, or speculate that both of these gentleman sold Wheaton a "bag of sour graps" knowing that Wheaton would pass the information to various sources outside of the agency and government for whatever reasons. That would fit in with the profile of Wheaton. Which ever came first, the chicken or the egg, Wheaton past the info to Sheenan or Sheenan past the information to Wheaton, or Sheenan got the information from Jenkins, or Wheaton got the information from Quintero is a mute point. It was all 'hear-say", with no documentation. The information in itself was flawed from the very beginning. I do not think this was done by CIA to protect any operation of the time, military or CIA. I think it was started by independents with a little bit of inside agency information as to proceedure and proto-call. I believe it was a project to establish publicity credit for a pending media project to make money. In the process the story started to fall apart and they bailed on Wheaton and Sheenan. Sheenan and Wheaton also saw a chance to run with the story, thinking they had the support of Jenkins and Quentero, or other previous CIA personal, to stand firm on their past statements of boasting about JFK and the Contra only to find out that was not the case. I do not think CIA had anything to do with the mechanics of any of that. It does not (IMO) fit their operations profile. Just because someone had or has contact with CIA operations does not mean they know everything the CIA does or thinks. The CIA as an agency has thrown many of their own to the wolves and thought nothing about it. The ones who play the game know this..., it is an accepted risk which we all agree to from the very start.

I know many will dis agree with this. And they will say I am CIA disinformation. It seems when people do not like what they hear or expect they cry "foul" and throw out the banner of "CIA Disinformation". Well Thanks for letting me speculate. I'll crawl back into my hole. Tosh

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  • 3 weeks later...
Cocaine Airways

A former CIA pilot says secret flights to El Toro could explain a Marine officer’s ‘suicide’

William Robert "Tosh" Plumlee

By NICK SCHOU

Thursday, September 14, 2006 - 3:00 pm

When we first spoke, a decade ago, the fear in his voice—the staccato pace, the tremor—was unmistakable.

“I can’t talk to you,” he said. “This is all classified.”

He answered just one question: if he told me what he knew, he’d go straight to federal prison for violating U.S. national security laws.

Then he hung up the telephone.

Two weeks ago, I tracked the man to his home in rural Pennsylvania. This time, he didn’t hang up on me. The terror in his voice was gone, replaced by the cheerful nonchalance that maybe just comes with being 69 years old and knowing that your kids have finished college, you’re well into retirement, and it’s too late for anyone to ruin your life for talking to a reporter about matters that powerful people would rather keep secret.

He laughed when he recalled our conversation a decade ago. He apologized for not answering my questions. He asked me what I wanted to know.

Over the course of the next several days, the man told me his life story.

http://www.ocweekly.com/news/news/cocaine-airways/25835/

http://www.ocweekly.com/news/news/men-in-suits/25941/

FWIW (protection before the fact. Has nothing to do about JFK's assassination)

OC WEEKLY Follow Up to Article of Sept. 16, 2006

NEWS

Men in Suits: Weekly story brings past to life for ex-CIA pilot

By NICK SCHOU

Thursday, October 5, 2006 - 3:00 pm

Photo:

Plumlee in his military days. Photo courtesy Tosh Plumlee

Thirteen years ago, former CIA pilot Tosh Plumlee went on television to discuss his top-secret career running drugs and weapons for the agency during the 1980s—a career that included covert flights to El Toro Marine Corps Air Station. Plumlee had already testified about that activity to Senator John Kerry’s 1989 inquiry into the CIA’s ties to Central American drug traffickers. His testimony remains classified until 2020. After the program aired, the FBI warned Plumlee that if he kept talking, he could go to federal prison for violating U.S. national security laws.

Plumlee kept his mouth shut, settled in a small town in rural Pennsylvania and enjoyed the quiet life until three weeks ago, when he told his life story to OC Weekly (see “Cocaine Airways,” Sept. 15). So perhaps it should come as no surprise that, four days after that article appeared, things got weird for Plumlee all over again.

On the morning of Sept. 18, Plumlee went to a local coffee shop to read the newspaper as he does every day. The town where he lives is small enough that strangers tend to stick out. He noticed two men sitting in a car in the parking lot of the restaurant. After he finished his coffee and morning read, he saw that the two men—both wearing suits—had moved from their car to a small table outside. As he walked past them, one of the men called out, “Hey, are you Tosh Plumlee?”

As Plumlee turned around to answer, both men sprang from their seats and approached him. One of them flashed an official-looking badge identifying himself as an FBI agent. Plumlee was only able to make out part of the man’s name on the badge.

“We just want to let you know that you’re being investigated for making false allegations against the government,” the man said.

The man didn’t mention OC Weekly, but the timing wasn’t lost on Plumlee. “I said, ‘Well, I guess you gotta do what you gotta do,’” he says. “‘So I’ll see you in court.’”

Plumlee drove home and immediately called the Pittsburgh office of the FBI. He provided them with the partial spelling of the name on the badge and asked if they had an agent matching that description. “They couldn’t confirm if they had any agents by that name or whether I was being investigated,” he says. As he hung up the phone, the possibility dawned on him that he was being harassed by bogus feds.

“They showed me credentials, but that doesn’t mean nothing,” Plumlee says. “And the FBI doesn’t work like that. The FBI doesn’t come out and hit somebody on the street and say, ‘Hey, we’re investigating you.’ And how are they going to prove anything? They’d have to go to court and open up all these secret files. That’s never going to happen. I believe it is somebody passing a message to me that they are watching what I’m saying.”

If somebody is trying to send Plumlee a message, it wouldn’t be the first time. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, Plumlee was writing a book, Black Knights of Cuba, about his CIA days. Among other things, the book included Plumlee’s recollection that right-wing Cubans planned to assassinate President John F. Kennedy in Miami in November 1961 by firing a bazooka at Air Force One—and that he and other operatives had been in Dealey Plaza on the day of Kennedy’s assassination, looking for pissed-off Cubans.

In the course of researching the book and calling old contacts in Miami, he’d been told to back off from the book project. Plumlee says he ignored the advice. In 1981, he was driving from Grant, Colorado, where Plumlee lived when he wasn’t flying on a regular basis, to nearby Bailey when someone fired several shots at his truck, riddling it with bullets. Lisa Lien, whose parents owned a local restaurant that Plumlee used as his mailing address and telephone number, was in the truck with Plumlee at the time.

“We were coming back to the restaurant and we were shot at,” she says. “I don’t remember a whole lot, because I was 20 and it was more than 20 years ago. We got out and were really freaked out. Neither of us got hit, but there were bullet holes in the bottom of one of the doors or toward the rear end of the truck.”

In August of that year, two men in suits approached Plumlee in Denver and told him to stop stirring up the past. “One of them was supposed to be a Secret Service agent,” Plumlee says. “But his name didn’t check out. And of course, everybody was saying he was CIA, but I don’t go there on stuff like that.”

That wasn’t the end of it, however. A few weeks later, someone attacked Plumlee outside a bar in Evergreen, Colorado. “I got pretty well beat up and the Evergreen Police Department never showed,” Plumlee says. “And I drove home and that’s when I see my house is on fire.” Neighbors were able to retrieve Plumlee’s dogs from the house, but most of his belongings—including his documents and partially written manuscript—went up in flames. “There was a hole in the window, and accelerant was all over the place,” he says. “It was firebombed. Who was behind it? Was it the CIA? The Cubans? I have no idea.”

A former neighbor of Plumlee who asked not to be identified by name claims she saw the fire from her house. “We thought it was a forest fire,” she says. “It wasn’t a small fire. It was fast, and there were men in suits running around. They split before the fire truck came.” On another occasion, the woman adds, men in suits parked near her house. “I think there were four guys, and a guy in front picked up a pair of binoculars and scoped our house out . . . There was an odd feeling in the air back then.”

Brad Lien, Lisa’s brother, who now runs the family’s restaurant, also remembers the day of the fire. “I remember Tosh coming back from the bar all beat up, and then we heard about the fire,” he says. “We all knew about it because everyone and their brother had police scanners. It was pretty suspicious.” He adds that, because Plumlee used the restaurant as his home address, he’d often see strange visitors looking for Plumlee. “A couple of times people would come in looking for him,” he says. “We always said we didn’t know where he was. Guys in suits and ties. I’m a biker, these guys were clean. Any kind of fed or someone clean-shaven and smelling pretty you can spot right off the bat.”

Plumlee later considered writing another book, but when his publisher told him he’d have to send it to the CIA to be reviewed and possibly censored, he backed down and kept quiet. When the Weekly first contacted him 10 years ago, shortly after his television appearance, to ask him about his covert flights to El Toro Marine Corps Air Station, Plumlee refused. After his most recent visit from the two men in suits, he could be forgiven for wishing he had remained quiet a bit longer. “I live in a quaint little town and am active in community affairs,” he says. “I’m 69 years old and I’m not trying to start anything. Stuff like this just goes with the territory.”

NSCHOU@OCWEEKLY.COM

Edited by William Plumlee
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